Jodi Arias Deemed Eligible for Death Penalty

The jury in the Arizona murder trial found Travis Alexander's killing was "especially cruel."
6:57 | 05/16/13

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Transcript for Jodi Arias Deemed Eligible for Death Penalty
Now, josh, to the latest in the jodi arias trial. The jury saying the way her ex was killed was "so cruel" and the question, well, she deserves the death penalty? Ryan owens has the latest from phoenix, arizona. Good morning, ryan. Reporter: Good morning, robin. The penalty fwaz officially kicks off this morning after the same jury that convicted jodi arias of first degree murder ruled her crime was so cruel, she's eligible for the death penalty. We the jury duly impaneled and sworn in the above-entitled action find that it has been proven. Reporter: She did not even flinch when the jury moved her one step closer to death row and no wonder. This is one verdict she had to see coming. Was he alive when you stabbed him in the heart? Yes. Was he alive when he was being stabbed in the back of the head? Yes. Reporter: All the prosecutor had to prove is the death of arias' ex-boyfriend, travis alexander was especially cruel. There was never much doubt about that. The 32-year-old admits she stabbed him 27 times and shot him in the face. And that's why you see on the left hand the defensive wounds and what he tries to do as he tries to reach up, is to try to take the knife away from her. Reporter: Prosecutor juan martinez told the jury travis alexander was fighting for his life and in excruciing pain as arias just kept stabbing him. Those details and the autopsy photos too much for alexander's family to bear. It was only death that relieved that pain and it was only death that relieved that anguish. Reporter: Jodi arias cried throughout. At one point she mouthed no as the prosecutor said she attacked her victim as he sat defenseless in his shower. Arias' attorneys didn't have much to offer only that spd may not have been in so much pain because of adrenaline pumping through his body and because the murder was quick, less than two minutes. For two minutes. Reporter: In response martinez had the courtroom sit silent for two minutes. Those two -- approximate two minutes we're talking about must have seemed like more than two lifetimes. Reporter: The penalty phase will get off to a very emotional start when the jury hears for the very first time from travis alexander's family. Two of his siblings are expected to deliver victim impact statements in just a couple of hours. George? Okay, thanks, ryan. More on this with our legal team, nancy grace host of her own show on hln and "gma" legal analyst dan abrams and, dan, did not seem to be a tough decision for the jury? No, this was the easy part for prosecutors. When you think about what type of murder this was, theumber of stab wounds, the fact that there were stab wounds in the back and that there was a gunshot. All of this together, it would have been stunning if the jury had not come back and determined that they at least survived this burden, which is to demonstrate there's an aggravating factor which allows them to get at a death penalty phase. What's going to happen here and why it's going to get tougher for prosecutors they'll have to weigh the aggravating factors against the mitigating ones. The question is going to be what exactly are the mitigating factors for jodi arias and we're already seeing the seeds of that from the defense. Nancy, what do you think she can argue? Well, I think that she's basically going to throw herself on the jury's mercy and hope that one of them will have second doubts -- second thoughts about the death penalty, i expect that wild horses couldn't drag arias away from the stand. Last night she was tweeting from behind bars so I think she will take the stand. I think that a former lover with whom she lived for a long time, years, left him to go to alexander, jerrold brewer will take the stand, he's the one she borrowed the gas cans from that turned up to be a major focus of the trial. I think she will have childhood friends, her mother, her grandmother and see everything from kindergarten photos to save her life. You said you don't think it's a death penalty case but everyone on the jury is at least open to the possibility of the death penalty. To sit on a death penalty case, you have to be able to say, I could impose the death penalty in a case like this. My point in this has been not that the prosecutors won't be able to prove the aggravating factors and not that the jury may not come back and say that the aggravating factors outweigh the mitigating ones. I believe from day one juan martinez never should have pursued it as a death penalty case because I don't believe that this is so unique, so the worst of the worst, such a specia case such that the death penalty should apply. This is a horrific domestic murder case and they happen a lot and I think this we have to use the death penalty more scarcely. Do you think jodi has a chance with her argument. I think she has a chance and her argument it seems to be now she's bipolar and this may have been a violent outburst. I think nancy is right about the types of defenses you're going to see but, look, remember, jodi arias lied to these jurors. These jurors believe jodi arias sat on the witness stand and lied to them. So this isn't just about theoretical lying and that's the problem I think jodi arias has at this point, these jurors don't believe her. We'll switch gears, nancy to o.J. Simpson. It seemed to a lot of court observers including our own neal karlinsky he was pretty credible at his turn on the witness stand. Nancy. Nancy. I think we lost her. O.J. Simpson case. He's got no chance. Basically no -- he was very charming. O.J. Simpson is a charming guy. I remember during the civil case to talk to him in the hallway and testified in that case. He can be incredibly charming but you can't retry the case now and that's kind of what he's trying to do to say, you know what, I probably should have taken the stand in that case. My lawyer convinced me thought to take the stand. The judge specifically asked the defendant are you waiving your right to take the stand and o.J. Simpson saying yes, he is a smart guy. Not someone who didn't understand the proceedings. To win in a case like this to show ineffective assistance of counsel, lawyers often joke that the lawyer basically has to be drooling. I mean they have had cases where lawyers have been inebriated, have had mental problems, lawyers haven't prepared for the case and all of those cases the court said, that's not ineffective assistance of counsel so think about a case like this, has a high-profile lawyer in yale galanter. I understand that o.J. Simpson thinks yale galanter did a terrible job for him but that's not ineffective assistance of counsel. We'll get the answer from yale galanter, at least his testimony on friday. Yeah. Dan, thanks very much. I'm sorry we lost that communication with nancy. I'm sure she'll be back next time. I'm surprised we still can't hear her.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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